Method again in 2010, I wrote Ten Reasons Chinese Companies Fail In The U.S. for Forbes Journal.
My prime ten checklist in that article was as follows:
1. Chinese language firms deal with a Chinese language shopper, not an American one.
2. Chinese language firms fail to understand how one reputation-damaging mistake in the US can doom them ceaselessly right here.
3. Chinese language firms fail to understand takes time for to make an affect in the US and they’re often not prepared to spend the money and time needed to take action.
4. Chinese language firms focus an excessive amount of on the tip outcome (earning money), and by doing so, they sacrifice the professionalism that may enable them to realize long- time period success.
5. Chinese language firms inform customers what they need as an alternative of listening to customers.
6. Chinese language firms focus an excessive amount of on earning money within the quick time period, reasonably than on constructing the standard essential to maintain themselves in the long run.
7. Chinese language firms fail to grasp how magnificence and design can distinguish their product from their opponents’s merchandise.
8. Chinese language firms rely an excessive amount of on cellphone calls and face-to-face conferences as an alternative of e-mail.
9. Chinese language firms fail to make use of “easy and stylish designs.”
10. Chinese language firms fail to understand their want to rent MBAs and people with native data.
The opposite day I acquired an e mail from a reader explaining why he preferred this text a lot after which continuing to checklist out precisely how so lots of the above issues apply to the Chinese language firm with which he works. The under is the e-mail, doctored to keep away from his firm ever with the ability to acknowledge them.
Your article was SO spot-on I needed to attain out to you. Let me first introduce myself.
I’m in a excessive degree advertising associated place for a Chinese language firm with a U.S. workplace. I’ve many years of excessive degree advertising expertise, some with Fortune 500 firms. I’m happy with my expertise and my contributions. This Chinese language firm presumably employed me due to my expertise and my previous accomplishments.
I took my present place to reinforce the gross sales aspect of this Chinese language firm. In my first yr on the firm I quadrupled the gross sales of 1 division. Regardless of this I’m always being advised that gross sales on this division must be significantly greater they usually constantly forecast these greater gross sales despite the fact that we don’t have the product in our warehouses to perform that. The excessive degree Chinese language executives on the firm merely don’t perceive that “American prospects is not going to wait six months for his or her product to return by boat from China.” How can any CEO undertaking such a forecast with out the stock? It is unnecessary and I reiterate this to administration until I’m blue within the face.
When it grew to become clear I used to be instrumental in growing gross sales, it was deemed “luck” by the Chinese language executives, together with the CEO.
All of the factors in your article I’ve fought about advert nauseum. I’ve by no means been so pissed off by a job. The shortage of designated obligations and titles to staff, the built-in cultural (and bluntly hinted at) expectations of working over 40 hours per week, “Chinese language model,” a not-so-subtle reference to Individuals being “lazy,” and furtive “Chinese language conferences” are all facets of working for Chinese language employers that depart us American employees lower than motivated.
I do know my state of affairs is hardly an remoted one. I’ve a European good friend who obtained fired at his giant Chinese language firm for making an attempt to replace the customer support coverage to be friendlier to patrons (they misrepresented their merchandise and didn’t grant refunds), and one other who was terminated after taking a stand in opposition to a pretend product his firm was promoting as actual. There’s a weird mindset amongst many within the Chinese language enterprise group right here that US legislation is irrelevant.
Your level in regards to the Chinese language coming right here considering the US market is just like the Chinese language market hit dwelling with me. Chinese language tastes are fairly totally different from American – we like totally different colours of merchandise, for instance. After I frequently level this out, it falls on deaf ears.
#1 and #5 go hand-in-hand, as I’ve additionally introduced up the “Shouldn’t we be telling China what to make, as an alternative of China sending us product we are able to’t promote?” query. Lately, the CEO requested the identical query, as if it have been an authentic thought, in fact.
I additionally agree with you on how Chinese language firms are likely to devalue “smooth” competencies resembling advertising, regardless of a stable advertising technique being pivotal to enterprise success. At one level early on with the corporate, I unveiled my ideas on forming the corporate’s future advertising technique. After my gross sales crew added its contributions, the CEO appeared dismissive of the proceedings, as if a few know-nothing Yanks have been telling him easy methods to run his enterprise.
Nicely, we have been. We’re in it for the long run. We wish to construct an excellent model with an excellent fame. Most significantly, we’re those with data of the American market and presumably that’s the reason we have been employed and that’s precisely what we have been supposedly tasked to do.
By the best way, Level #1 made me chuckle out loud, as a result of it jogged my memory of conversations I’ve had with the CEO.
BLOG NOTE: The under are typical conversations our China attorneys have had with Chinese language purchasers and have been what made this particular person chuckle from Level #1:
Chinese language purchasers have pushed me batty by asking my views on issues I do know nothing about, after which fully ignoring my recommendation when I attempt to join them to actual specialists. The next are typical conversations:
Chinese language shopper: How a lot ought to we pay for that U.S. trademark?
Me: I don’t know. I have no idea your business properly sufficient to have the ability to enable you to on this. However, we now have labored with an organization that does nothing however worth IP and I’d be glad to provide you their identify.
Chinese language shopper: However what’s your finest estimate?
* * * *
Chinese language shopper: Ought to we begin promoting our product simply on the West Coast or ought to we begin out nationally?
Me: Tough query. It appears the reply hinges on the prices concerned and in your skill to arrange distribution networks. My agency doesn’t deal with questions like this (and even when we did, I don’t assume it might make sense so that you can pay legislation agency charges for this data) however I’d be glad to refer you to prime notch enterprise consultants who do.
Chinese language shopper: Ought to we begin out in Los Angeles, Chicago or New York?
What are you seeing on the market? No actually, what are you seeing on the market when it comes to Chinese language firms determining how to make it in America? I’d love to listen to from what persons are seeing and listening to out within the area.
February 9, 2023 Replace: For the final yr or so, a ton of Chinese language firms have reached out to our attorneys to assist them get arrange in Mexico and although I’m discovering many of those firms significantly extra refined and internationally savvy than these described above, for a lot of it’s a dangerous case of deja vu.
I really pulled this submit immediately after talking with a Chinese language firm that requested me the place it ought to arrange its small manufacturing facility in China, even earlier than I knew what merchandise it might be making. I advised them that I didn’t know, however I might join them with somebody who did. Their response was to ask which I’d select as between Monterrey and Tijuana. I advised them that I didn’t know and reiterated that I might join them to somebody who would know. They appeared very pissed off by my solutions.